How to Plant a Bean Seed


Beans are tender, warm-season vegetables that are nearly as popular as the tomato in home gardens. Bush beans are bean plants that grow upright without support. Pole beans are bean plants that need supports to grow upright. Most beans are grown for their tasty pods, but some, like lima beans and soybeans, are grown for their seeds. Bean plants are sensitive to cold temperatures and frost. Plant bean seeds after all danger of spring frosts has passed. Bean seeds germinate best once the soil has warmed up for the year.

Step 1

Clear your garden areas of weeds, grass, rocks and sticks. Locate your bean patch in an area with full sun exposure. Beans grow best in the warmth of the sun.

Step 2

Loosen the soil to the depth of 12 inches with a shovel. Turn the soil over and remove any buried rocks, sticks and root masses. Break the soil clumps up with a garden hoe until the soil is the size of pebbles.

Step 3

Spread a 2-inch layer of sand over the site. Work this soil amendment into the loose soil it improve drainage. Beans do not like their roots in standing water. Rake the soil smooth and level.

Step 4

Create a trench 1-inch deep with the side of your garden hoe. Place your beans seeds in the trench at their proper spacing. Space your bush beans 2 to 4 inches apart and your pole beans at 4 to 6 inches apart.

Step 5

Cover your bean seeds with soil. Do not compact the soil down over the beans. Plant the rest of your bean rows 18 to 36 inches apart. Sprinkle the area with water until the soil is wet.

Tips and Warnings

  • Do not soak your bean seeds in water before planting. Bean seeds tend to crack and germinate poorly when their moisture content is too high.

Things You'll Need

  • Shovel
  • Garden hoe
  • Sand
  • Rake
  • Bean seeds
  • Water


  • University of Illinois Extension: Watch Your Garden Grow: Beans
  • AZ Master Gardener Manual: Beans
Keywords: planting bean seeds, growing beans, bean cultivation

About this Author

Karen Carter has spent the last three years working as a technology specialist in the public school system. This position included hardware/software installation, customer support, and writing training manuals. She also spent four years as a newspaper editor/reporter at the Willapa Harbor Herald.